How we age as individuals is no doubt a complex interaction of genetic and environmental factors. Studies of certain populations with optimal environments and health-related behaviors, as well as twin studies, suggest that the average set of genetic variations should facilitate the average person's ability to live to around age 85. Average life expectancies are lower than this because we generally fight survival advantage with bad health habits that can lead to premature aging, chronic illness, and death at a significantly younger age.
The Journals of Gerontology. Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences
BACKGROUND: Families of centenarians have high levels of plasma high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, which may have neurological as well as cardiovascular protective effects during aging. Because plasma HDL level declines progressively with aging, we examined whether centenarians with higher plasma HDL levels have better cognitive function.
Centenarians are people who escaped from major common diseases, including cancer, and reached the extreme limits of human life-span. The analysis of demographic data indicates that cancer incidence and mortality show a levelling off around the age of 85-90 years, and suggests that oldest old people and centenarians are protected from cancer onset and progression.
The 20th century will be remembered for its technological and scientific discoveries and for the exceptional changes in the demographic structure brought about by these and the improved economic and social conditions; in fact, the reduction in the birth rate and a fall in the death rate have caused an increase in the population of the elderly.
The purpose of this study is to test the prediction of the evolutionary theory of aging that human longevity comes with the cost of impaired reproductive success (higher infertility rates). Our validation study is based on the analysis of particularly reliable genealogical records for European aristocratic families using a logistic regression model with childlessness as a dependent (outcome) variable, and woman's life span, year of birth, age at marriage, husband's age at marriage, and husband's life span as independent (predictor) variables.
The aim of the present study was to investigate the association between blood groups and life expectancy. We compared frequencies of ABO blood group in 269 centenarians (persons over 100 years) living in Tokyo and those in regionally matched controls (n=7153). Frequencies of blood types A, O, B, and AB in centenarians were 34.2, 28.3, 29.4, and 8.2%, respectively, while those in controls were 38.6, 30.1, 21.9, and 9.4%, respectively. Blood type B was observed more frequently in centenarians than in controls (chi(2)=8.41, P=0.04).
OBJECTIVES: To assess the cause of death for centenarians' offspring and controls. DESIGN: Cross-sectional study. SETTING: Community-based, nationwide sample. PARTICIPANTS: Family pedigree information was collected on 295 offspring of centenarians (from 106 families with a parent already enrolled in the nationwide New England Centenarian Study) and on 276 controls (from 82 control families) from 1997 to 2000. Controls were individuals whose parents were born in the same year as the centenarians but at least one of whom died at the average life expectancy.
Our previous work revealed that 88% of centenarians delay or escape the age-related lethal diseases cardiac disease, stroke and diabetes. In the cases of those having a history of cancer we have observed anecdotes of centenarians presenting with large primary tumors that would have otherwise been expected to have metastasized and to have been lethal. However, these tumors were removed without consequence.
BACKGROUND: Asian Indian women have a higher rate of coronary artery disease (CAD) than do other ethnic groups, despite similar conventional risk factors and lipid profiles. Smaller high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) particle size is associated with reduced cardiac protection or even an increased risk of CAD. Exceptional longevity correlates better with larger HDL-C particle sizes.
Official figures show that life expectancy in Costa Rica is longer than in the United States (US), in spite of the fact that per capita health expenditure is only one-tenth that of the US. To check whether this is for real and to explore some of its determinants, 900 Costa Ricans aged 60+ were followed from 1984 to 2001. Follow-up household visits were made, deaths were tracked in the national death registry, and survival status in the voting registry was double-checked. In addition, the survivors were contacted in 2002. Two-thirds of the panel had died by December 2001.